ADA — A Roff man accused of stealing cattle last March was sentenced Tuesday morning after his original sentencing date was bumped ahead one week.

David Michael Eason, 22, Roff, who previously entered a blind plea in December, received a deferred sentence until Feb. 7, 2011 by District Judge Thomas Landrith. During that time, Eason is ordered to follow the rules and conditions of probation and parole. Additionally, Eason was fined $2,500, ordered to pay costs and was sentenced to 30 days in county jail.

Eason and his two alleged accomplices, 21-year-old James Euell Morgan Jr., Roff, and 26-year-old Jerome Don Courtney, were charged in March 2005 with larceny of a domestic animal, conspiracy to commit a felony, and attempting to obtain money by false pretense.

The three men were accused of stealing 15 head of cattle then attempting to sell them at the Southern Oklahoma Livestock sale barn. The animals were recovered by the Pontotoc County Sheriff's Department and returned home.

Court records indicate, Eason took the stand Tuesday and apologized to the cattle owner, Ed Tingle, for his actions.

Tingle also reportedly testified that he believed Eason was redeemable and said the sentence imposed was appropriate.

Monday morning, Morgan appeared in court and entered a "blind" Alford plea, which is equivalent to the plea of nolo contendere. In an Alford plea, the defendant does not admit guilt, but admits that sufficient evidence exists for the prosecution to possibly convince a judge or jury to find the defendant guilty. Morgan is scheduled for sentencing later this month.

Courtney remains free on personal recognizance awaiting trial.

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